Government survey shows 2.2% Indians have disability

News: The National Statistical Office (NSO), Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation conducted a Survey of Persons with Disabilities during July 2018 to December 2018 as a part of 76th round of National Sample Survey (NSS).


Key takeaways from the Survey:

  • Prevalence and Incidence of Disability:

o   The prevalence of disability (percentage of persons with disability in the population) was 2.2% with 2.3% in rural and 2.0% in urban areas. The prevalence was higher among males (2.4%) than females (1.9%).

o   The incidence of disability was 86 per 1, 00,000 persons.

  • Level of Education: Among persons with disabilities of age 7 years and above, 52.2% were literate. Only 19.3% of PwDs, aged 15years and above, had the highest educational level as secondary and above.
  • Receipt of aid/help: 21.8% of persons with disabilities received aid or help from the government and over 1.8% received aid/help from organizations other than the government.
  • Labour Force Participation Rate: Among 15 years and above, 23.8% disabled were found to be employed.

Note: All the specified disabilities as stated in the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 were considered in the survey.

Additional Information:

Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016

  • The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2016 replaced the PwD Act, 1995

Salient Features:

  • In the Act, the types of disabilities have been increased from 7 (as in PwD Act, 1995) to 21 and the Central Government has been empowered to add more types of disabilities.
  • Speech and Language Disability and Specific Learning Disability have been added for the first time. Acid Attack Victims have been included. Dwarfism, muscular dystrophy has been indicated as a separate class of specified disability. Three blood disorders, Thalassemia, Hemophilia and Sickle Cell disease have also been classified as disabilities.
  • Every child with benchmark disability between the age group of 6 and 18 years have been given the right to free education.
  • The Act also calls to ensure accessibility in public buildings (both Government and private) in a prescribed time-frame.
  • Implementation: The Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities and the State Commissioners act as regulatory bodies and Grievance Redressal agencies and also monitor implementation of the Act.

Accessible India Campaign- Sugamaya Bharat Abhiyan

  •  It is a nation-wide Campaign launched by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD) of the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment in 2015.
  • It aims to provide universal accessibility to persons with disabilities. 
  • It focuses on developing an accessible physical environment, transportation system, and Information & communication ecosystem.